Westbrook Fastest as Lone Star Le Mans Weekend Begins


Richard Westbrook started the TUDOR Championship weekend fastest (Courtesy of IMSA)

Richard Westbrook put the Visit Florida.com sponsored Chevrolet Corvette DP fastest in the opening practice session for the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Lone Star Le Mans event at the Circuit of the Americas.

Westbrook, who shares driving duties in the #90 prototype with Michael Valiante lapped the Austin track in 2:00.306 to lead the hour long session that kicked off the penultimate round of the inaugural TUDOR Championship season. Westbrook and Valiante currently lie third in the class points, 18 points behind leaders Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi. The Action Express Racing pair were third fastest in the session, half a second slower than Westbrook and behind Ozz Negri’s time in the Michael Shank Racing Ford-Riley.

Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates’ Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas were fourth fastest ahead of the Taylor brothers, who lie second in the points.

Gustavo Yacaman and Alex Brundle, giving the OAK Racing Ligier LMP2 chassis its North American debut were seventh fastest, 1.1 seconds off the ultimate pace.

The top five in the Prototype Challenge class were covered by less than a seconds, Gunnar Jeannette leading the cluster aboard the PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports entry co-driven by Frankie Montecalvo. Close behind followed the pair of RSR Racing entries, CORE Autosport’s #54 and the #8 of Starworks Motorsport.

Fred Makowiecki topped a trio of works backed Porsches at the head of GT Le Mans (GTLM). Makowiecki and Patrick Pilet are sharing a third CORE Autosport run machine, #910, as the TUDOR Championship shares the paddock with the FIA World Endurance Championship as that series returns to action for the first time since the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The three 911 were covered by less than four tenths of a second, Makowiecki pacing them on a 2:04.844.

The Dodge Viper of Kuno Wittmer and Jonathan Bomarito was fourth fastest.

Antonio Garcia now leads the GTLM points on his own, divorced from his teammate Jan Magnussen following the previous round at VIR. The pair, sharing the #3 Corvette Racing entry were only ninth fastest in the class.

James Davison was fastest of the GT Daytona runners in the #007 TRG-AMR entry. Sharing with Al Carter Davison lapped the 3.4mile track in 2:09.815. Andrew Davis was second quickest in the Dempsey Racing Porsche he shares with team owner Patrick Dempsey with Turner Motorsports’ men Dane Cameron and Markus Palttala third fastest.